Mars launches new ‘healthy’ chocolate bar in bid to overcome junk food laws

The new "Mars Triple Treat" bar includes date paste, nuts and raisins

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A new “healthy” Mars chocolate bar has been launched in a bid to overcome new junk food regulations.

The new bar, named ‘Mars Triple Treat” is made with date paste, nuts and raisins.

Only the base of the bar will be covered in chocolate, while its signature caramel will remain from the much-loved original Mars treat.

Mars Triple Treat
Mars Triple Treat
The Triple Treat contains less calories than the original bar
The Triple Treat contains less calories than the original bar

The Triple Treat, which contains 173 calories compared to 228 in the original bar, is expected to hit supermarket shelves next month.

The decision to revamp its bar comes as the Government attempts to crack down on food high in fat, salt and sugar.

Snickers, Bounty and Galaxy have also made new variants of their bars to counter the new regulations.

Mars said its experts had “spent thousands of hours working on every minute detail of the bars - from the chewy caramel in the malt-infused Mars Triple Treat, to the crunchy roasted nuts on the Snickers variant”.

The new bar will be sold at 80p each, with Mars saying the price rise compared to the original treat was due to the “very premium ingredients” included.

The crackdown on junk food was due to begin in October, but the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has now said that the bar on multi-buy promotions on foods and drinks high in fat, salt, or sugar (HFSS) is being put back a year to October 2023.

A ban on TV adverts for HFSS products before a 9pm watershed and on paid-for adverts online is also being delayed by 12 months and will now come into effect in January 2024.

Officials said the deferral of the buy-one-get-one-free (Bogof) ban was to give ministers a chance to assess the impact on household finances amid intense concern over the cost-of-living squeeze.

But health campaigners reacted with dismay to the news, accusing Prime Minister Boris Johnson of “playing politics” with children’s health.

Public Health Minister Maggie Throup insisted that they remained determined to tackle the issue of childhood obesity.

She said: “We’re committed to doing everything we can to help people live healthier lives."